Vinegar Syndrome probes THE ORAL GENERATION and the seventies’ other sexual fetishes in their first collection of shorts.
Presented by “Family Studies Institute” THE ORAL GENERATION purports to be the first sexual instruction film aimed at liberated women; although it’s focus is of course on how a woman can please a man (or how a woman can please a woman with a man watching) in a non-conventional manner. The narration describes the greater availability of literature on sexuality aimed at female readers (although what we are shown on-camera are the usual texts from Kinsey to Krafft-Ebing to "The Joy of Sex" and "The Sensuous Woman" as well as the usual porn magazines) as well as female-focused films (during a montage of 42nd Street porn theater marquees). The oral sex interludes intercut with this academic discussion take the form of anecdotes by wives surprising their husbands in the showers or role-playing as their husbands secretaries (the only interlude that is remotely arousing in its rhythmic and escalating intercutting). There's also a bizarre vignette involving a black samurai and a ménage a trois. Credits are non-existent for this one, but one of the performers appears to be Tina Russell (the 1970 date comes from Vinegar Syndrome's back cover).
THE ORAL GENERATION is additional supplemented with a lengthy outtake (9:12) which is just an unused oral pairing (they’re all cutaways so it’s difficult to discern where this one might have been placed in the feature). The trailer (2:30) actually opens up the feature since the dual layer disc was authored to play the trailer, shorts, and outtakes before the feature presentation. A menu screen allows individual access to all of the content including four shorts.
"Clinical Sex" (10:36) follows the private practice of a doctor and nurse who cater to sexually dysfunctional women, while "Any Way You Like It" (10:52) is more of the same (including a society housewife so traumatized by spying her equally middle-aged-looking son pleasuring the maids with vibrators). Both are softcore, as is the absolutely stupefying "Naked Sexes" (8:37) which intercuts a quartet of endlessly laughing naked women writhing on beds together and apart - to a tape recording of endless laughing - with a trio of furry bodybuilders striking jokey poses (also while laughing endlessly). "The Different Sex" (11:58) has a virginal (yeah, right) college student writing a paper on sexual education. When she suffers writer's block, her teacher suggests that she gets some practical experience; so she takes home two of her male classmates back to her apartment. After rolling around listlessly for a bit, she then expands her horizons with her roommate and a neighbor. All four shorts were produced by "Extraordinary Films" and feature not credits.
Scanned and mastered in 2K from the original camera negatives, Vinegar Syndrome’s progressive 1.33:1 fullscreen (original aspect ratio) transfers of the shorts and THE ORAL GENERATION are all gorgeously colorful – if NAKED SEXES doesn’t look quite as vibrant, blame the cheap and ugly décor and pasty skintones rather than the transfer or the elements – and the Dolby Digital 2.0 mono audio is in variable but generally good condition. Not a must-buy, but interesting in terms of Vinegar Syndrome’s ongoing efforts to preserve and make available – both on home video and as DCPs for screenings. Not really recommended but Vinegar Syndrome is to be commended for making sure even these trivial productions (more so their print materials) are not lost and forgotten. (Eric Cotenas)
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